Food & Drink,

Grand Central Market, Los Angeles

Here’s a simple, indisputable law of physics: we are cooler than our parents. If this law ever gets disproved, then the universe could actually collapse. So, when my folks called me up and offered to take me to downtown Los Angles and check out this place called Grand Central Market, I’m sure they weren’t surprised when they lost me at, “do you want to go with us…”

On a normal day, they would have given up when they heard me audibly snoring on the phone, but, sometimes fate intervenes… My Dad told me he hadn’t been there since he was a kid (was that supposed to help his case?), but he heard it had been re-done and we had to go check it out (keep in mind, my Dad watches reruns of “Two and Half Men”).

I grew up in L.A., but never heard of it. I never heard any of my friends talk about this place, so I was about to hang up when I felt my stomach commence to growl. Amy was at a Yoga class and my son, Maxwell was very hungry (that’s not good). You get where this is going…

When we walked into this place, I tried very hard not to let the sheer joy show too much on my face as I walked past one mouth watering place after another. Micro brews, fresh juices, bratuwurst, wood fired pizza, fresh made falafel, Thai,Mexican food, deli, eggs, Japanese, seafood, pupusas, fresh produce, a bakery, ice cream, ramen… I could just feel myself getting fatter.

First I had the vegan ramen from Ramen Hood. It was the best ramen I’ve ever had (and that’s saying something). I was splattering it all over my face while I ate it like a rabid dog. I’m pretty sure my folks were talking to me, but I could only grunt back, like a cave man.

Then, I had falafel from Madcapra… the pita and everything else is made to order, from scratch. While eating it, I started making loud noises. We were sitting at a community table, so it got awkward. Do you think I cared?

The only real issue arose when I started getting uncomfortably full… (thankfully the line was too long at Egg Slut). But, then my Dad offered me a bite of his vegan bratwurst from Berlin Currywurst. Do you realize how good it had to look for me to take a bite of his half-eaten food? Anyway, after I pretty much ate the rest of it in one large, super disgusting bite, we went over there and ordered another one and let them split it for us.

My stomach was now in full scale rebellion and I just wanted to lay down on the floor in a fetal position… But it was time for dessert. MAN UP!

Maxwell wanted shave ice from Sticky Rice. It was caramel apple with chia seeds. They make their syrups from scratch and there’s none of that nasty chemical junk from the cheap syrups. Believe me, you can tell the difference. Then, we wandered and grabbed a few small cookies from Valerie Confections and Bakery. I counted thirty small chocolate chips in one little cookie (just kidding, I can’t count that high, but it was a lot)!

Oh by the way, I got some Knead pasta to go. It was a pasta called Porcini Lasagnette. I thought I was ordering lasagne. Whatever, you never heard of it either. I dare you to taste it and forget it. Just say thank you and let’s move on…

When I go back (after hitting the gym about 10 times), I will be trying the wood fired pizza, fresh ice cream and whatever else I can get my paws on… I didn’t even get to try the micro brews, but they looked phenomenal.

In the meantime, if you live anywhere near L.A., get your ass down to this place. Great date spot on weekend nights, great for families during the day and early evenings. You can actually park right next to it, and it’s only $3 for the first 90 minutes (that’s fantastic for downtown L.A.). And if you ever visit L.A., this place is definitely worth checking out for a meal.

And now, I literally hate to have to do this…

But, I have to give credit where credit is due. Mom and Dad, thank you for being cooler than me (for one day) and taking us down to this place. Game changer.

I’ll never live this one down…

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Scott Malin is a best selling author of 7 books on health, diet and fitness. His fitness videos on YouTube have over 5 million views and has been featured as a health expert on ABC and KTLA News.

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